LEADING OFF: Astros face adversity; Giants-Cubs rematch
A look at what's happening all around the majors today:
BUMP IN THE ROAD
Houston still has the best record in baseball at 29-15, but the Astros have run into some adversity lately. Ace pitcher Dallas Keuchel (pinched nerve in neck) and catcher Brian McCann (concussion) went on the disabled list over the weekend, and Houston was swept at home by AL champion Cleveland. Next up, Brad Peacock makes his first start this season in the opener of a four-game series against Detroit. Peacock (2-0, 1.10 ERA) has pitched well out of the bullpen all year and will make a spot start in place of Keuchel. Michael Fulmer (5-1, 2.72), last season's AL Rookie of the Year, goes for the visiting Tigers.
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It's a rematch of last year's playoff series when Buster Posey and the Giants face the World Series champion Cubs in the opener of a four-game set at Wrigley Field. Chicago is coming off a 13-6 win over Milwaukee on Sunday, when Kris Bryant homered twice. Anthony Rizzo and Ben Zobrist also went deep. ''I think we were kind of due as a team offensively,'' Bryant said. ''We haven't really been doing much early on here. I think it was just a matter of time for us.''
Royals left-hander Jason Vargas (5-2, 2.03 ERA) gets another shot at the Yankees, this time in New York. Vargas had a 1.01 ERA, lowest in the majors, going into his home start against New York last week. But he was roughed up for six runs and seven hits in four innings, falling to 0-6 with a 7.15 ERA in his career vs. the Bronx Bombers. Vargas gave up as many runs in the fourth inning as he had in his first seven starts combined. Michael Pineda (4-2, 3.42) pitches again for New York after winning the previous matchup 11-7. He'll try to slow down Kansas City catcher Salvador Perez, who hit three homers in Sunday's doubleheader at Minnesota.
BATTLE OF OHIO
The Indians and Reds begin their annual interleague series in Cincinnati. Coming off a terrible start, Josh Tomlin (2-5, 6.86 ERA) pitches for Cleveland against Scott Feldman (2-4, 4.29). The Reds have lost eight of nine, with none of their starters going more than 5 1/3 innings.
UBALDO TRIES AGAIN
Orioles right-hander Ubaldo Jimenez (1-2, 6.52 ERA) hasn't won since April 19. During the dry spell, he's started four games and pitched once out of the bullpen. He gets another chance against the Twins, who split a doubleheader with Kansas City on Sunday and were scrambling to find a starter in Baltimore for the opener of a three-game series. Jimenez is 5-3 lifetime against Minnesota.
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